Common Core Math Vocabulary

Metric System - Definition with Examples

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What is the metric system? 
The metric system is a system of measurement that involves measuring length, mass and volume in their respective metric units. 

The standard units (SI) for measuring length are kilometers, meters and centimeters; weight are kilograms, grams and milligrams, volume are liters, and milliliters. 

Metric or Standard Units of Metric System of Measurement
Length: Millimeter (mm), Decimeter (dm), Centimeter (cm), Meter (m), and Kilometer (km) are used to measure how long or wide or tall an object is.
Examples include measuring the thickness or length of debit card, length of cloth, or distance between two cities. 
Weight: Gram (g) and Kilogram(kg) are used to measure how heavy an object, using instruments. Examples include measuring weight of fruits or, our own body weight. 
Capacity: Milliliter (ml) and Liter (l) are used to measure how much quantity of liquid an object can hold. Examples include measuring the amount of juice in a juice can, or amount of water of in a water tank. 

Metric Conversions: Meters, grams and liters are considered the base units of length, weight and volume, respectively. 

Base units of Metric System of Measurement

Here’s how we can multiply or divide for making metric conversions. To convert a bigger unit to the smaller unit, we move left to write, we multiple by 10. Moving right to left, from smaller unit to bigger, we divide by 10.

Conversion of big and small units in metric system of measurement

  Fun Facts

  • A tonne is 1,000 kilograms.
  • The metric system has its beginnings back 1670 by a mathematician called Gabriel Mouton. 

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Find a millimeter in a pencil tip,
Find a centimeter in big paper clip.
Find a millilitre in the juice you drink,
Find a liter in the water filled in the sink.
Find a gram in the mango you ate,
Find a kilogram in it’s packet of eight!

let's do it Let's do it!

Instead of handing our word problem worksheets to your child, site real life instances  in which the child is required to measure length, weight or capacity in metric units or convert bigger units into smaller units. For instance, at the grocery store, ask your child to weight 8 apples using a digital weight balance, in kilograms. Then ask him to convert the weight into grams and milligrams. 

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